Big Game Focus: Liverpool v Manchester United

The biggest Premier League match of the weekend will be at Anfield on Sunday when Liverpool and Manchester United – the two most successful teams in England – do battle. This is our Big Game Focus for the clash.

Liverpool went top of the table last weekend when they thumped Bournemouth 4-0 and Manchester City lost to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. They then followed that up with a crucial 1-0 win over Napoli in the Champions League on Tuesday night, that guaranteed their passage to the last 16 of the competition.

Manchester United will also be buoyed by their biggest win of the season, a 4-1 home win over Fulham last Saturday. They will be striving to be the first team to beat Liverpool in the Premier League this season, a momentous task given that they only have one win in their last five league matches.

Here is our guide to the game, including betting advice, team news and likely line-ups.

Betting tips

Only one of the last seven competitive matches between these two old rivals has produced more than 2.5 goals. In fact, Wayne Rooney’s 78th minute winner in January 2016 is the only goal that has been scored in the last three Liverpool-United encounters at Anfield. Odds for Under 2.5 Goals are at 2.15 here.

Liverpool’s incredible defensive form this season is a huge reason why they sit at the top of the Premier League table. They have conceded only six goals in 16 matches. United boss José Mourinho is likely to set up in such a way as to create a cagey affair. A very low-scoring match is on the cards. Both Teams to Score is valued at 1.95 here.

United won 2-1 when the two teams last met, courtesy of a Marcus Rashford double in the first half of last season’s clash at Old Trafford. Six out of the last nine goals in this fixture were all scored in the first half. The same is true for nine out of the last 13 goals scored in United’s matches. Bet on the First Half With Most Goals at amazing odds of 3.10 here.

Team news

Joel Matip, James Milner and Trent Alexander-Arnold were all forced off the match against Napoli after suffering knocks. Matip appeared to be the most serious of the three, but none of them is certain to miss out. Joe Gomez, Nathaniel Clyne and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will definitely play no part as they nurse longer-term injuries.

Victor Lindelöf and Alexis Sanchez are unlikely to play any part in United’s campaign for the rest of the year, and are therefore ruled out of the match this weekend. Other than that, Mourinho only has to contend with knocks in a number of his players.

Likely line-ups

Liverpool: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Lovren, Robertson; Henderson, Wijnaldum; Shaqiri, Salah, Mané; Firmino

Manchester United: De Gea; Young, Smalling, Jones, Shaw; Herrera, Matić, Pogba; Lingard, Lukaku, Martial